Daily Devotional - 25 August 2020
“All the believers were united in heart and mind. And they felt that what they owned was not their own, so they shared everything they had. The apostles testified powerfully to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and God’s great blessing was upon them all. There were no needy people among them, because those who owned land or houses would sell them and bring the money to the apostles to give to those in need.” (Acts 4:32-35).
As I read these words again this morning, I couldn’t help but note the contrast between the early Church and the Church that exists today. The church of the apostles’ day is difficult to find in our modern day sense of entitlement. Not just ‘united in heart and mind,’ but fully owning the need to care for others. Can anyone reading these words today honestly say with the early members of the Church, “What I own, is not my own?” There are times when we are reminded that ‘our’ possessions are simply on loan and as easily as God can give, He can also take away. As I reflect on this idea, I am able to think of a handful of people amongst the many that I have known who I can honestly say have embraced this truth, but they are few compared to the many.
As human beings we can become so easily entangled in the pursuit of money and things–for many these items provide a false sense of security. And while God has brought me a long way along this road of learning to rely solely on Him and not stuff, I too recognize that I am not immune. It’s easy to talk the talk of trusting God, but the proof is in our attitude towards the things that we sometimes claim as ours. Does God have our permission to ‘touch our stuff?’ Or are there some things that we withhold and assume rights over?
So how did the believers in the early church overcome this natural human propensity? For one thing, they believed Jesus’ return was imminent! What was the use of stockpiling stuff? We know from our vantage point, 2000 years later, that Jesus has yet to return and while we acknowledge that He could come back any time, we live as though we don’t expect His return for another 2000 years. We prove by the way we hang onto our stuff that the words we speak do not match up with the beliefs of our hearts. I am not encouraging everyone to go out and give everything they own away, but I would suggest a good hard look at our perspective. Do we really believe that Jesus could come back any day as the early believers did and live accordingly or have we settled into a worldly rut with our eyes focused on the ground and never an upwards glance toward heaven?
~ Pastor Jane
First licensed for pastoral ministry in 1994, Pastor Jane Peck has served in camp and church ministries in three denominations, five provinces and in a variety of roles. Her most recent position is that of Pastor at Hope Chapel which she began in 2020. She is excited to see what God can and will do in the days to come!